Looking for creative hotel photoshoot ideas? This guide has it all – we have covered hotel rooms, amenities to spaces such as balconies, rooftops and pools for a well-rounded accommodation interior and exterior photography.
Salil and I mostly book hotels in a mid-budget range, with occasionally splurging on some stellar properties (like we got engaged in a gorgeous Fairmont hotel in Canada!).
Use our hotelshoot guide to compose your own adventures and share on social media!
Creative and Cute Hotel Photoshoot Ideas
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‘Oh I just woke up’ look in bed
A hotel room means a nice comfy bed. Showcase that with you on the bed – messy comforters and pillows will also work.
Break into a neatly done bed, and do your magic!
Pose with pillows
Use the pillows for a cute pillow fight. But what do you do when you are traveling alone?
Get comfortable and use the pillow as a prop. Pose in a yoga – lotus position, put the pillow on top and pretend to read. I usually travel with my Kindle and this shot is very me.
But you can always find a directory or a newspaper to pose with!
Pro tip: Try to open the windows to get natural light in when you take indoor shots!
Capture the room decoration or art on the wall
Most hotel rooms will have a nice wall art or painting above the bed. Use that as a backdrop to capture a beautiful shot of you (or subject) enjoying a lovely time!
We have seen some of the cute hotel paintings in affordable places, so don’t dismiss popular hotel brands.
PS: Hotel rooms are perfect to practice your poses, or use your tripods – you don’t have to worry about losing your equipment here!
Sipping coffee, taking in the views from a hotel room balcony
If you booked a hotel room with a private balcony, show it off! There are lots of things that you can do
- Sip coffee
- Do a little ‘I am waking up’ mode
Capture views from the balcony
Don’t want to be in the shot? No problem.
Capture the city views from the balcony or do a little sunset/sunrise view shoot.
Pro tip: The golden hour is perfect for that! And as this is your hotel room waking up early for pictures won’t be an issue!
Tea or coffee in bed in a hotel room
No balcony, no problem.
Pick up a nice cuppa tea or coffee and pose on your bed.
Pro tip: If you are working for a brand, use their signature mugs/cups to add that extra zing!
Hotel photoshoot with food (ice cream, or any meal)
For us, hotels and room service go hand in hand. Or at least food!
Capture any type of food or meal from ice cream, coffee to breakfast in bed and show how much fun you are having with it.
With food being the subject of the photo, you don’t have to pose!
Beer or wine in bed
Remember, I mentioned we celebrated our engagement in a hotel.
Bring out the best wine in a nice glass and use views from the window as a backdrop!
A messy bed adds to the storyline!
By the fireplace in your hotel room
If you have a fireplace in your hotel room, that’s a perfect fall or winter photoshoot idea.
Use a coffee mug (even if its empty) and strike a pose. Remember not to go too close to the fire. Put on a nice sweater and a beanie to complete the look.
Hotel amenities – General items
For a nice hotel photo variety, take shots of the general amenities that come in a suite.
This can be bathrobes, slippers, toiletries or any dining and seating area. If you are working with a brand, don’t miss photographing these areas!
Capture the views outside, from the window
We are slowly moving towards spaces outside the hotel rooms, but first don’t forget to shoot a photo of the views, from your window.
Rooms with views are a little extra, so don’t miss the opportunity to pose.
Frame the shot with window panels or curtains in view; for that added effect.
Rooftop terrace views
Not all hotels will have an epic terrace with views. If you do, take the opportunity to compose a nice shot!
Here are a few ideas
- Shoot a landmark image (like an Eiffel Tower or Florence Duomo background. These photos are hard to fail)
- Have breakfast or capture a restaurant with views
- Make a toast, raise your glass!
Hotel lobby photos
If you are working for a brand, don’t forget to take a shot of the lobby area.
We have stayed in many hotels with a stunning lobby (some even better than the rooms themselves).
So don’t be afraid to take a shot!
Note: If you are planning to sell photos to a brand (like a hotel), try to shoot when the lobby is empty. Brands use photos as promotional media and they prefer shots without people in it (for privacy reasons).
Hotel restaurant photoshoot
Amazing hotel rooms will (most likely) have stellar restaurants. Can’t afford to stay in that 5 star property, well, reserve a table for a nice photoshoot!
Sip wine, coffee or enjoy a lovely meal for a beautiful picture. If you can book a table with views, double bonus!
Tip: If you are traveling alone, opt for a mini tripod like this one. You can use it on a table next to you to shoot, without disturbing other guests or asking the server for a photo.
Soaking in a hot pool or swimming pool
Swimming pools are a creative way to showcase a hotel property!
You can get in the pool with a nice swimsuit or even outside soaking in the sun!
Other hotel areas for a photoshoot
Accommodation in Airbnbs or Riads (in Morocco) will have fountains, cute corners, lobbies with a nice set up – these are great places for a photoshoot.
Hotel amenities – Capturing pool parties
Parties and celebrations in a hotel property during your stay is a BONUS photoshoot idea.
Place yourself (as a subject) with the party commotion behind you – showing off how much FUN you are having!
Or just capture the bustling event with all the colors!
Capture iconic hotel properties as a background
Have you ever stayed in a castle like property? Well, this is a great opportunity to strike a pose with the architectural beauty!
Keep in mind that many a times there could be a large parking lot or unwanted space in front of you. If that is the case, then move around and experiment a bit to remove the distractions from your photos.
Having a subject as a foreground definitely helps to hide those imperfections (in the middle ground).
Photography terms: The element of the photo closest to you is the foreground (in most cases your subject). The furthest element away from you is the background, while the middle ground makes up the area in between.
Outside a pretty cabin covered in snow: Hotel photography
A wintery landscape can add a really cool perspective to a normal/regular cabin shot.
There are a lot of ideas to shoot a cabin style hotel with snow,
- Capture a dreamy landscape with the cabin further away
- Have a subject enjoy a cup of tea/coffee/hot chocolate and standin near the cabin door (photo 1)
- You can also frame the subject looking outside the cabin (for this to work, place your tripod inside the cabin) (photo 2)
- Or pose right outside the cabin (photo 3)
Capture seasonal decorations or better yet during Christmas
Hotel lobby areas are always decorated for seasonal events – think fall, Halloween or Christmas! This is a great opportunity to create Hallmark Card like shots with or without a subject.
Pro tip: You can also use the backdrop of shiny lights for portrait photography. To create a blurry background of Christmas lights in a hotel use Aperture priority or Portrait mode in iPhones.
General photography tips for indoor or hotel room photoshoot
Hotel photoshoot means indoor photography. And they can be challenging sometimes, but there are a few things you can do to get great results.
Use a tripod – A tripod will help keep your camera steady and prevent blurry photos.
Turn off the flash – Unless you are very close to your subject, the flash is likely to create harsh shadows and glare. Instead, try turning off the flash and using natural light.
Adjust the white balance – Indoor lighting can often create a yellowish tint in photos. To avoid this, adjust the white balance setting on your camera.
Increase the ISO – If you are taking photos in low light, you may need to increase the ISO setting on your camera to avoid blurry photos.
Experiment with different angles – Get creative and experiment with different angles and perspectives to add interest to your photos.
Focus on the details – When taking indoor photos, pay attention to the small details that can make a big impact. For example, focus on interesting textures, patterns, or colors.
Use a wide angle lens – A wide-angle lens is great for architectural photography. A wide-angle lens allows you to capture an entire hotel room without being very far away. The room also appears to be bigger in doing so.
Use the right phone lens – We all take photos with our cell phones these days. If you are using an iphone – opt for a .5 lens to shoot an indoor space like a room or the building itself.
Editing your images – With all photos, a little editing goes a long way to make your images pop and look professional. I use LightRoom to edit all of my photos.
Organizing and backing up – Once you get home, always remember to back up your lovely hotel room photos. Also, label them and stay organized!
By following these tips, you can take amazing indoor and hotel photos that you’ll be proud to share.
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